Amaal was a 23-year old Egyptian Muslim girl with a beautiful smile. Like many Egyptians, she is warm and friendly and curious about Westerners. This led her to a friendship with a young Christian family from America who showed her the love of Christ and led her to faith in Him.
Amaal shared her new faith with her mother who threatened to kill her. Fearful that someone in the family would do that, Amaal left home and found a job in a resort hotel where she was blackmailed by her boss who threatened to tell others about her conversion in exchange for sexual favors. Amaal fled again and was arrested by the police. “Tell us who has converted you,” they demanded, “and we will let you go.”
When I found Amaal a year later she was hiding in the home of a kind Muslim couple. I gave her a New Testament and promised to meet her again. I wondered what important Scripture verses I should share to encourage this sister whose faith had cost her so much. But Amaal had found them herself – she had already read the first 10 chapters of Matthew’s gospel. “Listen to this,” she said,
“Be on your guard against men; they will hand you over to the local councils and flog you….On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. When they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (Matt. 10:17-20)
Amaal smiled at me, “He knew,” she exclaimed, “Jesus knew!” For Amaal, it was enough. Jesus knew where she was, what she would encounter, and that He would always be with her. And for Amaal, that was enough. “Jesus is inside me now,” she said, pointing to her heart. “He will never leave me.”
How to Pray:
- Pray for Muslim-background believers like Amaal who suffer persecution for the sake of the faith in Jesus Christ.
- Pray for the youth of the Arab World, that they will have the opportunity to learn about other faiths without persecution or threats.
- Pray for political and religious leaders in the Arab world to support freedom for their people to explore and pursue their own understanding of God.